How to Increase Fertility Naturally with Bone Broth
It breaks my heart to say this, but the issue of infertility has become more and more widespread.
Although we haven’t worked together personally, I have one very dear friend who’s been trying for the last two years to conceive naturally with little success. The emotional turmoil that it puts her through is brutal.
And she’s not the only one going through this. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, over the course of just nine years (2000 – 2009), deliveries using ART (Assistive Reproductive Technology) methods such as IVF, have doubled. Overall, American birth rates have been regularly declining since 2007. Today, 6.7 million women of all ages are experiencing infertility issues and miscarriages!
But Why Has Infertility Become So Common?
As with most issues, there are a lot of contributing factors. Here are a few of the most common:
- Chronic stress + anxiety (from work and especially out of fear around infertility)
- Gut + digestive issues (like leaky gut)
- The MTHFR genetic mutation
- Hormonal dysfunction from birth control and hormonal contraceptives
- Imbalanced blood sugar
- Irregular ovulation
- Inefficient hormonal detoxification
- Lack of healthy, monounsaturated fats (like, for instance, from avocados!)
- Lack of Vitamin D from being outside in the sun
- Lack of lymphatic circulation-boosting, estrogen-metabolizing movement + exercise
And, of course, we can’t leave out the elephant in the room: age.
The media loves to blow this one out of proportion with the argument that women are taking more time to focus on higher education and careers before starting families, which is true. I’ll give them that.
According to the American Society for Reproductive Medicine, approximately 20% of women wait until after age 35 to begin their families. This often leads people to conclude that since women are trying to conceive later, their age is the main factor that reduces the viability of pregnancies. Yes, of course your egg-count and sperm-count have their important roles, but as you can see from the list above, there are no fewer than 11 additional contributing factors relating to infertility issues and miscarriages.
However, waiting longer isn’t necessarily altogether bad.
Sure, age can be a contributing factor but it’s certainly not this make or break issue that’s unfortunately getting painted all over the media.
Thankfully, health practitioners and fertility experts like Christa Orecchio and Dr. Marc Sklar are beginning to speak out about this, sharing the message that whether you’re in your 20’s, 30’s, or 40’s, you absolutely have the ability to conceive and conceive naturally, at that, with some health maintenance (read more here). A few more words on it from Christa Orecchio:
“It is crucial to understand that the health of your child is determined before you even conceive. It is also crucial to understand and be empowered by the fact that it is absolutely possible to conceive just as healthfully as you would have in your 20s if you do a little clean up work and boost your health.”
So, how do we increase fertility naturally and “clean up”? Well, the easiest place to start is using strategic food and supplementation.
How to Increase Fertility Naturally with Bone Broth
In case we haven’t hammered it into you enough already, how you eat, move, think, and live each play a HUGE role in your ability to conceive.
That being said, just as there are foods that hinder fertility efforts, there are also foods that support your hormones and their fertile flow. We like to call these fertility foods.
This brings me to bone broth and fertility. Did you know that bone broth is actually one of the most fertility-friendly foods out there?! That’s right. It balances hormones and bolsters your fertility relieving you and your mate of infertility issues naturally.
According to Dr. Marc Sklar, also known as The Fertility Expert,
“Bone Broth, the way my grandmothers used to make it, is full of nutrients that every cell in our body thrives needs. The cells that make up our eggs and sperm are no different. Often, I see patients who are lacking in proper nutrition and bone broth can help set the reset their entire foundation. There is nothing more important than providing those cells, (the very cells that make up baby-to-be), with the proper nutrients it needs in order to create the healthiest and happiest child possible.”
Which is why we, over here, go to great lengths to make our bone broth just as Grammy did!
At his natural fertility clinic, Dr. Sklar has seen his patients succeed not only with fertility, but also tremendously improving their intestinal and digestive health, joint pain, hair, skin, nails, and even autoimmune issues by drinking as little as one cup of cup of bone broth a day.
Sound like a stretch? It’s not. Here’s why bone broth is such a powerful fertility food.
I can sum it up for you in just one word – synergy.
Healing your GI tract doesn’t just make for an orgasmic pooping experience – it changes your entire internal environment by calming whole body inflammation. It’s that kind of environment that increases nutrient bioavailability from the vitamin and mineral rich foods and supplements you’re working so hard to get into your system.
You can be eating the world’s healthiest, most fertility-friendly foods out there. But, if those nutrients aren’t bioavailable to your body, then instead of absorbing those nutrients, you’ll literally be pissing them (and your money) away.
To bring this topic of bone broth and body synergy home, we need to talk adrenal function. Consuming bone bone broth directly supports kidney function (by patching up the holes in kidney tissue, which Dr. Cate Shanahan, author of Deep Nutrition and consultant to the LA Laker’s, talks about HERE). Kidney function directly supports the adrenals (small glands located on top of each kidney). Your adrenal glands produce essential hormones, like sex hormones and cortisol, vital to immune health and fertility.
Boom! There you have it. Bone broth is a fertility friendly food because it creates whole body synergy. This has also lead to bone broth during pregnancy becoming a more common recommendation from holistic and naturopathic doctors.
But, just in case your friends are asking you for justification on how drinking bone broth is going to increase your fertile flow, here are a few bullet points you can use to defend yourself:
- The collagen (which turns into gelatin when cooked) in bone broth helps to heal serious digestive issues like leaky gut, reducing gut inflammation caused by massive spikes in cortisol (the stress hormone) which can throw hormonal function completely out of whack.)
- The gut healing that takes place (due to collagen) allows for enhanced nutrient bioavailability to your body (from the food and supplements you eat). Vitamins and minerals from those nutrients are the things that feed (create and support) your hormones.
- The amino acids (protein building blocks) proline, glycine, arginine, and glutamine, with which bone broth is packed, support our body’s detoxification systems, getting rid of excess hormones, for example estrogen, that cause all sorts of infertility issues.
Bone broth is, of course, not the only fertility-friendly food, but it’s one of the most impactful ones. We have a whole post on other fertility foods coming out soon (be on the lookout), but in the meantime, here are a few additional favorites:
- Bee pollen (high in folate)
- Yellow maca powder [women] + Black maca powder [men] (high nutrients that help adapt to chronic stress)
- Royal Jelly (high in essential amino acids + B-complex)
- Vitamin D
- Camu camu powder (high in Vitamin C)
- Leafy greens + greens complex (high in chlorophyll and chlorella, breast milk producing nutrients)
More Fertility Resources
Because this one is so near and dear to my heart, I’ve gathered a list of 10 books, articles, and programs, here, for you to further investigate this on your own if it’s something you and your partner are experiencing:
- How to Conceive Naturally: And Have a Healthy Pregnancy After 30
- WomanCode: Perfect Your Cycle, Amplify Your Fertility, Supercharge Your Sex Drive, and Become a Power Source
- Taking Charge of Your Fertility by Toni Weschler
- Plan to Get Pregnant: 10 Steps to Maximum Fertility by Zita West
- Natural Fertility: The Complete Guide to Avoiding or Achieving Conception by Francesca Naish
- Bubba Yum Yum The Paleo Way: For new Mums Babies and Toddlers
- Assessing and Improving Fertility in Your 30s and 40s (7 lab tests that will…make the parents and mom healthy)
Now, we’ve re-opened the conversation about fertility and shown you that issues with infertility and miscarriage can absolutely be addressed using whole foods, like bone broth, as they work to synergistically heal gut and hormonal health.
Let’s do our friends and family members (suffering through these issues) a huge favor, and expose them to this knowledge. Share this with at least 3 people you know who could benefit from reading this article and let us know how it’s helped them 🙂
Delfina is the spirited nutrition coach, movement educator, recipe developer and alternative health blogger behind health/wellness info-hub, Code to Wellness. She uses her #eatmovethink method to help clients reclaim their health and thrive in their bodies by overcoming the struggle with weight, sugar cravings, hormone imbalance, and movement related issues successfully + sustainably.